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Fireworks, Thunderstorms and all things that go B-o-o-m!

Posted by Kelly Jansens on

Fireworks and thunderstorms can bring on high anxiety for your pet. For some pets loud noises do not affect them. This is GREAT! For those of us who’s pets it does effect, there are some things that you can do to help keep them calm. I never had issues with any of my dogs during thunderstorms, however fire works for Bodie-dog was at the top of his fear-list.

Bodie was never scared of any loud noises the first four years of his life. I am not really sure how it started. Maybe, as he got older, he was more sensitive to loud noises or something happened, perhaps when I was not around?

Trying to get his anxiety level down around firework time was my priority. I checked with my Vet at the time to see if there was anything I could do for his anxiety and he subscribed a tranquilizer pill. I gave Bodie one pill and I did not like how he looked and seemed to feel. His eyes became blood shot and he still was pacing in between the fireworks. I was done with that test. I don’t like to give my pets pills if it could be avoided. For the past three years or so, I would buy children’s liquid benadryl and give him a couple tablespoons. It seemed to calm him down a bit, but I am not sure if that was the right thing to give him or not. I would then, put him in my bedroom, turn the fan on high and lay on the floor with him, until the fireworks stopped. If I would of known about the *Canna-Pet, this is what I would of used over medicine. 

A couple years, when I was going out of town over a holiday, I boarded him at a local kennel out in the country, where fireworks were not easily heard. I am sure that these were some of his best days…far, far away from the noise.

Side note…hey, I am all for people celebrating with fire works, but it would be great if some people abided by the firework rules and not shoot them off all night and into the early morning. After having a dog that was scared half to death of the “boom” factor, I now really cannot stand the times of year that people are allowed to shoot fireworks off. I say, leave the shows to the professionals and out of the neighborhood sub-divisions. So, enough about that…J

Now, on thunderstorms…this really never seemed to bother Bodie or my other dogs. I have friends though that have some sleepless nights, when their poor pups are scared, pace and just don’t know what to do. I have heard that the “thunder-jackets” and some of the same tips for firework noise helps. 

I feel sorry for the animals that are left outside during these stressful times as well as the wild life. They must be so confused and scared.

Here are some tips for calming your dog during fireworks or a thunderstorm:

  1. Make sure your dog’s crate is available for them to hunker down in. This is a safe zone for them.
  2. Create a “white noise,” like a house fan, soft music or turn on a T.V. Make sure the noise is not too loud however. If the white noise is too loud, it could add to your pet’s anxiety.
  3. Pre-prep for these times of high anxiety by training your dog to overcome their fears by listening to CDs or audio recordings with loud noises during the day. Play it at a low volume while playing with your dog and reinforce with treats and positive stimuli. Slowly increase the volume over a period of weeks, until your pet can hear the noises at the level in which they may experience a thunderstorm set or a firework boom.
  4. Thunder shirts, calming collars and capes. All available at your local pet store or on-line.
  5. *Canna-Pet. I wish I knew about this sooner. Not only does it calm pets naturally, but has many other health benefits for animals. They have great customer service as well.
  6. Always consult your veterinarian and decide what’s best for your pet. You don’t want them to suffer if you have tried everything and nothing seems to work.

These are just my thoughts and ideas that have worked for me. I am not an expert on this subject, but a person that has a huge heart for animals and concern for their well being. Please share what has worked for you in the past that may help others.

Make sure you are prepared for the next holiday celebration and or thunder-boom.

Love, Peace & Wags,


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